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Joe Conason (born January 25, 1954) is an American journalist, author and liberal political commentator. He writes a column for Salon.com and has written a number of books, including Big Lies (2003), which addresses what he claims are myths spread about liberals by conservatives. He currently is editor-in-chief at The National Memo, a leftwing political newsletter and website.
Life and career
Conason was born in New York City. His father, Emanuel Voltaire Conason (1912–2008), co-owned Ellie Conason, a contemporary design and crafts store in White Plains, with his wife, Eleanor (née Levinson) Conason (August 20, 1917 – January 5, 2002). The family's surname was originally "Cohen".
From 1978-90, he worked as a columnist and staff writer at The Village Voice. In The Free Voice of Labor, a 1980 documentary movie about the Yiddish anarchist newspaper Freie Arbeiter Stimme (Free Voice of Labor), a young Conason was interviewed. His grandfather Joseph Cohen served as the paper's editor for a number of years and Conason may have been an intern for them.
Conason was a regular guest and a guest host on The Al Franken Show, where he had the distinction of being the only guest with two theme songs. He made an appearance every Friday as a commentator, as well as co-judging with Franken their weekly quiz show Wait, wait, don't lie to me. In 2000, he co-authored the book The Hunting of the President: The 10 Year Campaign to Destroy Bill and Hillary Clinton with Gene Lyons; the book was turned into a documentary in 2004, which Conason co-produced. The Raw Deal, his book on the Bush Administration's efforts to "end Social Security as we know it", appeared in 2005.
In 2007, he published It Can Happen Here: Authoritarian Peril in the Age of Bush. Conason briefly appeared in part 2. of the Adam Curtis documentary The Power Of Nightmares talking about neoconservatives' "fantasy enemy" in the Lewinsky scandal.
- Big Lies: The Right-Wing Propaganda Machine and How It Distorts the Truth. St. Martin's Press. 15 June 2004. ISBN 978-0-312-31561-0.
- It Can Happen Here: Authoritarian Peril in the Age of Bush. St. Martin's Press. 8 January 2008. ISBN 978-0-312-37930-8.
- Gene Lyons; Joe Conason (3 February 2001). The Hunting of the President: The Ten-Year Campaign to Destroy Bill and Hillary Clinton. St. Martin's Press. ISBN 978-1-4668-2873-5.
- Sarah Posner, Joe Conason, God's Profits: Faith, Fraud, and the Republican Crusade for Values Voters, PolipointPress, 2008; ISBN 9780979482212
- The Raw Deal: How the Bush Republicans Plan to Destroy Social Security and the Legacy of the New Deal, PoliPointPress, 2005, ISBN 9780976062127